It’s time again for “Dear Wendy Updates,” a feature where people I’ve given advice to in the past let us know whether they followed the advice and how they’re doing now. Today, we hear from “Uneasy about His ‘Friend'” who was feeling apprehensive about her boyfriend’s friendship with another woman, especially since he would soon be moving to the other woman’s city for grad school. “I don’t want to tell him to not hang out with his friend,” she wrote, “but I don’t feel like this is a good friendship and I’m a bit uncomfortable. Is there a better compromise/solution to be made here?” Keep reading to see whether they found a compromise.
Looking back at this, I feel so silly. At the time, I was happy in that relationship, but it definitely feels like I blew things, like my boyfriend drunk texting his female friend, out of proportion, because at the time, that was the only place I had to put my LDR worries. Or as a friend suggested, I was looking at escape routes from a narrative that wasn’t working.
As I struggled to balance my turbo-demanding masters program, make new friends, and move forward professionally and personally, he wouldn’t acknowledge everything that I was balancing and just said that I always worry too much and everything will be OK, and similar platitudes.
He is doing a part-time masters degree…and that’s it. He kept talking about getting a job, but never made a proactive move on it. He only hangs out with people he knows from our university. He says he wants to intern at a well-known firm in his field and knows someone who writes for their journal, but in three months, never worked towards submitting, despite saying he was going to do so.
I made time to talk to him three nights a week, but he pushed back if I wanted to talk during the day and would call and beg to talk on nights when I had told him I would be busy — out with friends or in the library preparing for a big assessment…but he never had any conflicting engagements!
My final straw was when I told him about a really cool doctoral program in my area (more of a professional degree than others I had been looking at) and he gave me the options of two other cities because he could never move to where I am because he had no professional opportunities (a research institute and a doctoral program are close by…) and then later in that conversation, told me he wasn’t sure he was in the right field and didn’t know what he was going to do after getting his degree.
I broke up with him and he tried to negotiate for a break, for just a month. He lashed out at me when I reiterated my mindset (gently). We talked a few days later to affirm how wonderful our relationship was for that specific time in our lives where we were in the same place and on the same page in life and that we would always mean something to each other. He’s going to check in when he feels ready.
With that resolved, I’ve been able to focus on school work and make some really terrific friends here.
I think he needs to focus on himself and his future, and I was happy to hear he will be hanging out with P this weekend. According to Facebook, she’s happy at a new job and maybe could give him some perspective on making circumstances work in your favor?
Yeah, people outgrow each other. C’est la vie! At least you got out before things got nasty, right?
If you’re someone I’ve given advice to in the past, I’d love to hear from you, too. Email me at [email protected] with a link to the original post, and let me know whether you followed the advice and how you’re doing now.
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If you have a relationship/dating question I can help answer, you can send me your letters at [email protected].
bittergaymark December 17, 2012, 11:40 am
Gee, maybe your boyfriend wouldn’t have pulled away so had you not routinely judged him shamelessly while constantly treating him as your latest fix-up project. Oh, and I’m sorry, but nobody here VIEWED you as a Crazy-Controlling Girlfriend. Instead… NEWSFLASH! You WERE a crazy controlling girlfriend. Frankly, the fact that — even NOW — you still fail to see this doesn’t bode particularly well for your future relationships…
MissDre December 17, 2012, 12:31 pm
That’s unfair… there’s nothing wrong with wanting to be with a partner who has some direction and ambition in life. I don’t understand why you feel the need to bash this LW. I re-read her initial letter and any normal woman would feel uncomfortable with her s.o. being friends with a woman like she described. She never forbid him from seeing the other woman, she just made her discomfort known and asked her boyfriend to set boundaries. How is that being a control freak? It’s not. Women are not control freaks just because they are asking to have certain needs met.
As for what went on afterward, people change. People grow apart. She realized that she and her boyfriend were no longer on the same page and made the decision to move on and pursue her own aspirations. Good for her!
Every time you post you just become more and more of a bully.
kf December 17, 2012, 1:46 pm
“She never forbid him from seeing the other woman”
No, she just forbid him from hanging out with her unless other people were present, like a mommy might do with her six year old and creepy Uncle Ernie.
MissDre December 17, 2012, 1:51 pm
As I said, asking her boyfriend to set boundaries/meet certain needs does not make a woman a control freak. He’s a grown man, he’s perfectly capable of saying “No” if these requests are unacceptable to him or if he’s unwilling to make such a compromise.
kf December 17, 2012, 2:05 pm
Nobody is questioning his complicity in being controlled.
MackenzieLee December 17, 2012, 11:53 am
so paraphrasing: I’m upset that yall called me a crazy controlling girlfriend even though when I look back I see I blew things out of proportion and was a crazy controlling girlfriend
Addie Pray December 17, 2012, 12:51 pm
haha, good point, ML
Fabelle December 17, 2012, 12:31 pm
I don’t know what to make of this update. I mean, I do think it’s good that you guys have separated (like Wendy said, sounds like the main problem is… you outgrew each other) but the rest doesn’t really flow. It just seems like there’s more between the lines of “We couldn’t schedule a time to communicate & he refuses to get a job.” Especially since your last letter was “He has a shady friend who I don’t trust & he’s moving to her city soon.” I guess I’m curious how that turned into “I’m happy he’s hanging out with her soon; maybe she can,uh, help him with…job…circumstances.”
kerrycontrary December 17, 2012, 12:42 pm
I don’t think the LW was a control freak at all. Her boyfriend was sending flirty texts to a woman who openly had a crush on him and talks negatively about the LW. I think that Wendy was right and they outgrew each other. Oh, and I would leave a guy with no ambition or career plan as well. Women can’t sit around wasting their time wondering when a man is going to get it together. I went to grad school full time and worked in my field 20 hours a week in addition to being in a LDR, surely he could manage a little more responsibility.
MissDre December 17, 2012, 1:08 pm
kf December 17, 2012, 1:41 pm
“I don’t think the LW was a control freak at all. Her boyfriend was sending flirty texts to a woman who openly had a crush on him and talks negatively about the LW.”
These two things aren’t mutually exclusive at all. It’s entirely possible that the boyfriend was doing inappropriate things, *and* the LW was a control freak.
“Oh, and I would leave a guy with no ambition or career plan as well.”
Sure, me too. What I wouldn’t do is tell him where he should apply, who he should hang out with, set rules about how, when and where he could hang out with someone else, or what an acceptable blood alcohol content would be during said hanging out.
kerrycontrary December 17, 2012, 1:48 pm
My boyfriend and I don’t hang out with members of the opposite sex alone. Nor can he get drunk with a woman who spoke negatively of me. I must be a HUGE control freak.
MissDre December 17, 2012, 1:54 pm
bittergaymark December 17, 2012, 2:01 pm
Well, yeah. Nobody’s going to argue with you both on that. You probably ARE control freaks. Sorry, it just seems like a rather fearful way to live. Is EVERYBODY really that much of a threat? I mean, c’mon! Seriously, just how hot are your boyfriends…?
kerrycontrary December 17, 2012, 2:22 pm
Well…I would never spend time with someone who spoke negatively about my SO. Just period. It’s rude. I have my boyfriend’s back, always, so if someones going to insult him and then hit on me they probably aren’t the best person to spend time with. And vice versa.
bittergaymark December 17, 2012, 2:26 pm
It’s more the hanging out alone with members of the opposite sex one that has me stumped. What all entails hanging out? Lunches or coffees are frowned upon, I suspect. I dunno. Just odd to me…
GatorGirl December 17, 2012, 2:51 pm
In my relationship, it’s that you don’t go out drinking alone with the opposite gender. Lunches, coffees, knock yourself out. They are usually work related though.
Lili December 17, 2012, 3:33 pm
See, the drinking alone I don’t get either. I mean, people don’t need alcohol to cheat if they are going to, and other people present are no guarantee either. People cheat because they don’t respect their partner enough to be faithful.
GatorGirl December 17, 2012, 3:46 pm
Oh I agree Lili. People cheat, it’s not the alcohol’s fault.
Addie Pray December 17, 2012, 10:48 pm
But alcohol helps!
BecBoo84 December 17, 2012, 3:27 pm
I’m actually with you on that one BGM (which is a rarity), but I have found that I tend to be in the minority. I think it’s weird when folks in relationships can’t have 1 on 1 hangout time with members of the opposite sex, especially when those relationships might have preceded the romantic one, but the majority of my friends/coworkers seem to disagree with me on that matter.
JK December 17, 2012, 2:29 pm
But do you have to set a rule about that? Shouldnt your SO have your back as well, and not want to spend time with someone that is rude to you?
kerrycontrary December 17, 2012, 2:58 pm
yeh, it’s more just like an agreement in our relationship. Like a boundary that we’ve both agreed upon. It’s not like I imposed these rules/boundaries on my boyfriend without his agreement. It works for us, i don’t really need to defend it.
kf December 17, 2012, 2:02 pm
I think you kind of might be, a little bit. As it happens, I’m going to hang out with an opposite-sex friend tonight. My wife encourages this because I meet her actual, non-crazy needs.
Also, note that LW wouldn’t let her boyfriend hang out alone with the friend OR be drunk in her vicinity. So, ginger ale at New Year’s Eve parties?
kf December 17, 2012, 2:13 pm
And anyway, trying to control an early stage boyfriend is just dumb from a practical standpoint. If his character is such that he would cheat on you if given the opportunity, isn’t is best to find that out as early as possible?
GatorGirl December 17, 2012, 2:08 pm
We have the same “rules”. We also have full access to each others texts/emails/facebook/etc so we must be the crazy ones.
JK December 17, 2012, 2:14 pm
GG, just a question, you have said before that after your BF cheated you were both in a better place, and trusted each other completely. WHy the need for all the controls and access to email and texts?
GatorGirl December 17, 2012, 2:20 pm
It’s not that we go out of our way to share all those things, but more so that we don’t go out of our way to restrict access to any of them.
Like we know each others passwords and I’ll use his Facebook here and there to look at profiles of people I’m not friends with and he’ll log into my e-mail to get a picture someone e-mailed to me but not him. You know what I mean? If I pick up his phone to find a text from a friend about a dinner date or something neither of us bat an eye.
kerrycontrary December 17, 2012, 2:23 pm
Yeh I think its more just a convenience thing. Like “hey your mom texted you and said such and such”, where as some people go to great lengths to lock their phones and not have anyone look at their texts (and it’s usually for a reason).
JK December 17, 2012, 2:28 pm
But there is a vast difference between seeing something on the phone for convenience sake, and having “full access” to it. Or email or whatever.
FWIW I am insecure although I´m getting a lot better about it, but I would have never dreamed of setting rules with my husband about who we were allowed to spend time with, how much access we were grantd to each other´s stuff, etc.
Like has been said on here before, if you have so little faith in your SO that you snoop, have to forbid them x or y, then why bother being in that r/ship?
GatorGirl December 17, 2012, 2:41 pm
We sent up “boundaries” that work for our relationship. Maybe the fact that we don’t hang out alone with the opposite gender or that we share all of our passwords or that he texts me every day to let me know that he got to work safetly isn’t right for your relationship. But it is right for our relationship.
Amanda December 17, 2012, 2:50 pm
JK December 17, 2012, 2:53 pm
@GG every relationship is it´s own little world,and I´m positive you must put up with or accept a lot of things about your relationship that I never would.
Lili December 17, 2012, 2:54 pm
I don’t get not hanging out alone with the opposite gender, it screams men and women can’t be friends without there being sexual tension to me, and I hate that mindset. I have plenty of male friends who have never hit on me, and i’ve never hit on them.
GatorGirl December 17, 2012, 3:03 pm
@JK I don’t know if you meant it this way, but it sounds like you think we have a shitty relationship. We really don’t. There was one incident, 3 years ago, where he cheated (but not sex cheated). Since then we’ve spent 3 years really figuring out what we each need and have developed a really mutually fulfilling relationship. Neither of us just “put up with things”.
@lili You say you get frustrated with people assuming there is always sexual tension, then you say your guy friends hit on you! So contradictory! Just because you don’t reciprocate, the sexual tension is there on one side.
Lili December 17, 2012, 3:10 pm
@GG–I said NEVER hit on me.
bethany December 17, 2012, 3:12 pm
My husband and I both have close friends of the opposite gender, who we hang out with alone. However, in both cases we were friends with these other people before we met. I don’t care when he hangs out with Sarah, and I dont’ care what they do.
Now, if my husband randomly made a new girl friend and wanted to hang out with her without me, that might be weird to me…
GatorGirl December 17, 2012, 3:14 pm
@lili Sorry, read over the never!
theattack December 17, 2012, 3:17 pm
I would absolutely love it if people would just be happy for couples who have boundaries that they’re mutually happy with.
kerrycontrary December 17, 2012, 3:40 pm
Thank you, theattack!
Lili December 17, 2012, 3:21 pm
@TheAttack, then all the DW commenting would cease to exist! All we do is speculate on others relationships 🙂
bethany December 17, 2012, 3:27 pm
My husband and I also have “full access” to eachother’s stuff- he leaves his damn email open on the computer all the time, and we both know the passwords for eachother’s phones and stuff, but he is NOT allowed to have full access to DW!! That is where I draw the line 🙂
GatorGirl December 17, 2012, 3:47 pm
Oh yeah, DW is off the table. haha. But he knows I frequent here.
CatsMeow December 17, 2012, 2:26 pm
I think this particular LW’s response to the situation was fairly reasonable. Her long-term BF had a friend that made her uncomfortable for several reasons, so she had a discussion with him about setting boundaries. I think the fact that they were long-distance played a part as well.
But it’s entirely different, I think, to make a blanket rule that your SO can’t hang out with members of the opposite sex. That sounds insane to me (no offense! I just don’t get it!) because from my perspective, I could never date a guy who wouldn’t let me hang out with my guy friends. I mean, I know realistically that not everyone wants to bang my boyfriend. And if he cheats, that’s his fault – not mine for not regulating who he can be around.
bittergaymark December 17, 2012, 2:28 pm
It all sounds very 17th century to me as well…
Rachel December 17, 2012, 2:32 pm
Agreed. I thought this LW was being reasonable about setting boundaries *in this one situation*, but I can’t imagine deciding on some general rule like that for my own relationship.
CaraM December 17, 2012, 3:32 pm
I totally agree. But what I don’t really understand in the first place about the original letter is why the bf wants to hang out with a girl who said mean things about the LW? I wouldn’t want to hang out with a friend who was trash talking my boyfriend, so that seems more like a problem.
I think if I was in the original situation, I would talk to my boyfriend about WHY she made me uncomfortable but I wouldn’t forbid him to do anything. I don’t know why people need rules to govern their relationships — if your bf/gf really wants to do somethingthat is hurtful to you or makes you uncomfortable, isn’t that the bigger issue? Who cares who your boyfriend has coffee with or lunch with? He is in a relationship with YOU, not with anyone else, so your feelings should be a priority, and if he doesn’t act that way, you have bigger problems than regulating lunch dates.
BecBoo84 December 17, 2012, 4:37 pm
Yes X1000 to your last line!
Qara Koz December 17, 2012, 12:54 pm
Something about the tone of this update really rubbed me the wrong way as well. Everyone works at their own pace and the condescending tone that he hadn’t submitted anything or only hangs out with a specific group of friends seems really unnecessary. You could only talk on specific nights he couldn’t talk to you at any other time?Moreover the “final straw” was when he wasn’t interested in a doctoral program in your area?
Growing apart is fine but the tone of your letter (especially in the last paragraph) sounds more like you’re looking down on him for not wanting the things you do. LW, it’s really not for you to decide what choices he should be making in his life. Where he interns, where he wants to live, what he wants to do with his degree are all HIS decisions and instead of supporting him in making those decisions you had already decided what you think would be the best options for him. That’s where the controlling bit comes in. It’s fine to offer your input but you really don’t get to pick his doctoral program. And it’s definitely not for you to decide what your EX should be focusing on in his life.
MissDre December 17, 2012, 1:15 pm
I don’t understand how you see her making choices for him and looking down on him. To me it sounds like she WAS trying to be supportive, but he showed a lack of ambition for anything, so she tried to make suggestions. And he STILL lacked ambition or direction, so she moved on. She sounds like a bright young woman with a future ahead of her, why should she be stuck trying to support someone who doesn’t know what the hell he wants in life and doesn’t seem to be making any effort?
I really think it just breaks down to these two people not being compatible. People here give LWs shit all the time for being so “desperate” to be with somebody that they’ll stay in relationships with people who don’t meet their needs. Now we hear an update from a woman who had the confidence and strength to leave such a relationship and people are saying she’s condescending and controlling?
C’mon DWers… I know we’re all far more supportive and compassionate than that. We should be saying good for you LW for leaving a situation you weren’t happy with, and best of luck in your doctoral studies and hope you find a relationship that works out for you in the future.
Qara Koz December 17, 2012, 2:54 pm
I understand where you’re coming from and it’s great that the LW has so much of her life together is not a mess like so many other people who write in. And I also think most of can agree that the world is not direct binary of people who are needy vs. people who are confident.
Confidence and strength are great traits for an individual to have when making decisions about their own lives. I think some of us see the LW as being controlling when when she tries to make decisions about her SO’s life (HIS doctoral programs, internships, friendships with other people).
I fully support the LW moving on from a situation she wasn’t happy in. However, I do not appreciate the tone of this update and I think LW needs to take a minute to evaluate how she was treating this person just because they weren’t on the same page.
bittergaymark December 17, 2012, 1:16 pm
Yeah, the tone was just OFF…
JK December 17, 2012, 1:21 pm
Esp. when compared to the original letter, from planning a future together and having a “wonderful” relationship now he was an aimless loser?
kerrycontrary December 17, 2012, 1:25 pm
Well, sometimes you wake up one day and realize that your boyfriend is an aimless loser. I’m sure she’s not the first person that it happened to.
MissDre December 17, 2012, 1:36 pm
Yep. Sometimes, you just really want it to work! Nobody wants to admit the faults of a partner, especially when that person is someone you love. It’s hard to see the negative aspects of a relationship, until it’s over and you can look at things in hindsight.
bethany December 17, 2012, 2:08 pm
Yeah, I thought that was weird, too. In the 1st letter the relationship seemed really serious, like it was going somewhere, and in the update, it seemed a lot less so…??
Jess December 17, 2012, 1:30 pm
I just want to comment on the increasing number of LWs we see who have boyfriends who are lost in terms of career/education/finances/ambition. Whereas the LWs seem to be on an ambitious track. Maybe some of it is just the ego of the writer wanting to cast herself in a positive light. But I also read article after article about these scenarios “The End of Men, The New Female Domination of the Workplace, The Lost Identity of Men, The Never Never Land Boys” etc. etc.
And I work in a university where we see decreasing numbers of qualified male applicants. And then there are the young men in my friend and family circles –so many of them seem lost too. Unmotivated, unsure of what they want, smoking pot, playing video games, avoiding commitment. It just feels like it’s everywhere these days. I’m not trying to pain them in a terrible light. It’s really just mystifying to me.
As a boss, an aunt, a cousin, and a friend, I enjoy playing a mentoring role when asked. It’s so rewarding to help young people achieve their dreams. But when there is no dream? I don’t know how to help young men identify a passion. It’s as if they don’t see any reasonable goal to strive for so they don’t strive at all. Maybe it’s the economy? Maybe it’s a generation raised to expect more and feel disenchanted with the dismal opportunities of this economy? Maybe it’s drugs/TV/video games (I’m being sarcastic there –that argument is as old as dirt by now). Feminism?
In short, if it’s true that more men are floundering than women, why?
Jess December 17, 2012, 1:30 pm
P.S. I realize this is probably more of a forum topic but this reminded me of it and I am eager to talk about it!
kerrycontrary December 17, 2012, 1:51 pm
I think it’s so interesting as well. I’ve read theories (that I think are full of shit) that it’s because women have emasculated men and taken away their desire to be providers. Blaming women for a man’s problem. Yet even though women are getting more advanced degrees, men are still getting paid more….
j2 December 17, 2012, 2:12 pm
If we are to believe one of Wendy’s links over the weekend, this may not be entirely true:
“Women now outnumber men on college campuses, and single, childless women out earn their male counterparts.”
That is, it may be long breaks from work or choices to opt out of competitive tracks in favor of motherhood that bring down the numbers. Anecdotal reports seem to suggest that fathers who end up with the kids when a marriage ends (by death or divorce) also fall behind in wages.
Many guys I talk to claim the education system (especially in the lower grades) has become feminized in teacher count and curriculum approach, and that it grossly favors “sit still good girls” over “hands on active boys.” I tried to refute that, and failed when one guy sent me to this link:
Apparently elementary teachers are 82% women and 18% men.
I don’t know the right of it, but the problems expressed by the “millenial woman” in the story at Wendy’s link may be the coming trend.
Mandy December 17, 2012, 6:54 pm
Good point about more women being teachers, but that doesn’t explain any curriculum decisions, most of which are made by school boards headed by – you guessed it – men. As far as pay disparity, women on average still earn .77/every man’s dollar, no matter how much single women may be earning.
j2 December 17, 2012, 8:51 pm
Childless, not single.
The point is that the primary child rearer ends up trading career advancement for it, whichever gender does it.
More mothers make that compromise than men, hence the stat you cite.
landygirl December 17, 2012, 1:58 pm
I guess I’m wondering how the issue went from he and his friend flirting to you breaking up with him because he has no ambition. You went from not wanting him to see her to saying “I think he needs to focus on himself and his future, and I was happy to hear he will be hanging out with P this weekend. According to Facebook, she’s happy at a new job and maybe could give him some perspective on making circumstances work in your favor?”
Maybe P was never really the issue here? In any case, I hope things go well for you LW.
Fabelle December 17, 2012, 2:24 pm
yeah, this is my basic confusion as well—which is why I think there must be more to it. It’s like we’re being updated on a totally different letter. I mean, sorry LW, but we’re a bunch of close readers here…
Jiggs December 18, 2012, 5:02 pm
I don’t think P was the major issue, the LW says herself she suspects she (the LW) was channeling all her concerns about this relationships into the flirty texts. When you’re not into a relationship anymore and you can’t quite figure out why yet, I think it’s easy to leap on the first hard transgression as proof that It’s All Over. Many women feel like they need a reason or impetus to break up rather than “meh, this isn’t doing it for me anymore”.
cdobbs December 17, 2012, 2:57 pm
this LW just reminds me of when i was in grad school in arizona (arizona state) and i worked in a lab with a guy who was married (just co-workers, barely even interacted at work)…any way the one night everyone in lab went to a nearby pub for some dinner and drinks and this guy’s wife shows up…not even 15 minutes into the evening this woman is giving me the 3rd degree “are you married, do you have a boyfriend, are you seeing anybody?!!!!”…she ends up following me into the bathroom where she asks how i like working with her husband, i reply “its nice, your husband is a very nice man”….a few days later some other co-workers are laughing about how this woman is flipping out, saying i have a thing for her husband (not even a little bit!)…the biggest flip out was when she found out we all had to fly to california together for a conference…when she heard i was going, she tagged along because she didn’t want her husband to be alone with me in another state! (we weren’t going to be alone mind you, even the professor we worked for was there)…i guess long story short is…i hope to god i never act like such a paranoid, clingy, co-dependent psycho like that….just…not…cool! i think people need to realize that there are 7 billion people on the planet and yes your significant other is going to talk to other people, even people of the opposite sex…the trick is to trust the person you are with and if you can’t then maybe move on to someone you can.
JK December 17, 2012, 3:00 pm
kf December 17, 2012, 3:06 pm
But…but your colleague is a grown man, he’s perfectly capable of saying “No” if these requests are unacceptable to him or if he’s unwilling to make such a compromise. So, his wife couldn’t *possibly* have been controlling.
bittergaymark December 17, 2012, 3:24 pm
Hah! Nice sarcasm.
It often astounds me how insecure many on here unwittingly reveal themselves to be about their own relationships… Indeed it’s all very fascinating to me all these rules and regulations some women routinely seem to make of their men. And of course then they all say, oh, well, he can always just say no to the rules at any time…
Or wouldn’t many of these rule makers simply then kick them to the curb? If not, how can the rules even work…? I remain so confused.
*EDIT I use women here because so far I don’t recall any male DWers who’ve chimed in about how they forbid their partners from doing ab and c.
GatorGirl December 17, 2012, 3:30 pm
Why do you always assume that the woman is making the rules for her man? Why not assume that they came up with the “rule” together and they both want it in place?
bittergaymark December 17, 2012, 3:40 pm
Probably because nobody on here seemingly ever describes it as being that way… Instead, it’s always follows the usual pattern of conversation. Some controlling LW writes in and gets me riled up and so I take them to task… Almost immediately, a small but vocal chorus of women quickly chime in saying that the incredibly controlling demands of the LW make PERFECT sense to them and that they do the same with their boyfriends…
kerrycontrary December 17, 2012, 3:41 pm
WGGS. I think people are taking my use of the word “rule” too much to heart.
SixtyFour December 17, 2012, 3:47 pm
My ex used to set “rules” that he wanted me to follow. Like not being out alone with another guy drinking. Always texting him when I got home from a night out with the girls cause he wanted to make sure I hadn’t gone home with some random guy. No dancing with other guys.
And then he went on to cheat on me. So yeah, guys are perfectly capable of being jealous and insecure as well.
GirlOnFire December 17, 2012, 6:36 pm
BGM: You’re always making snippy, mean-spirited generalizations and assumptions about ALL women, especially the LWs or commenters here. SO I’m going to make some assumptions and stereotype you:
Because you’re a man (and a gay one, therefore you hate all women, or at the very least look down on them, or secretly want to be one?), you’re never going to understand women, so quit trying. Or atleast quit twisting every aspect of a womens behavior into something that’s reprehensible, especially when you cannot understand it. Just because we both have sex with men, doesn’t give you the right to constantly bash and generalize womanhood or think you’ve cornered the market on undertsanding all the complexities of a woman. Of EACH woman. We are all different. Every person is different.
Not all women are evil harpies that want to control their men and the WORLD. Not every women has an evil agenda with every move she makes or every man she loves.
See how easy it is to generalize? None of that may be true about you, but it doesn’t feel very good, does it?
bittergaymark December 18, 2012, 3:01 am
Try some reading comprehension… I dunno, maybe go and take a class or something. Seriously. Hell, I specifically say “some women” and even toss in the very specific a “small but vocal chorus of women” in the very posts you are talking about.
FireStar December 17, 2012, 3:36 pm
what a sad life that woman has…to trail after her husband in order to guard him from imaginary seductions…I know there have been studies done that show men (in particular) desire women more when they think others desire that women also (in the initial phases of attraction)…but is the associated theory you have to impute random people desiring your partner FOREVER in order to desire them yourself? Exhausting.
cdobbs December 17, 2012, 3:52 pm
thanx FireStar…i think you made the point i was trying to make which is: it is sad that the woman had to trail after her husband to protect him from being seduced….i think if you constantly live in fear like that you just end up doing what you most fear…pushing the one you love away
FireStar December 17, 2012, 3:31 pm
What I’ve come to realize is one person’s crazy, controlling girlfriend is another person’s respectful, loyal girlfriend. I say to each his own. Do whatever works for you. If that means keep your eyes downcast in the presence of the other sex or if that means you are free to swing from chandeliers with naked men as long as the chandelier isn’t ripped from the ceiling…. who cares? Everyone has boundaries…find someone who matches yours and all is well in the world.
MissDre December 17, 2012, 3:43 pm
SixtyFour December 17, 2012, 3:49 pm
kerrycontrary December 17, 2012, 4:18 pm
katie December 17, 2012, 6:00 pm
“My final straw was… he wasn’t sure he was in the right field and didn’t know what he was going to do after getting his degree.”
really? you broke up with him because he wasnt 100% sure of what he was doing in his life? that bothers me more then anything else.
sometimes people take longer then others to figure out their life- their job, their career, their “calling”-whatever it may be. why is this bad? why does this make someone an undesirable partner? why is this seen as an automatic “lack of ambition” when really it is just uncertainty?
honestly, that friday links was RIGHT- millennial women DO need to lower their standards if the standard is that men have to have a successful absolute money making career in place, complete with masters degrees and X number of hours logged. thats just ridiculous. to write someone off for that reason, not looking at your compatibility, chemistry, love, ect, is ridiculous. a person’s career path is NOT who they are. i dont get this at all. i will never get it, really.
FireStar December 17, 2012, 8:50 pm
That is a valid reason…for her. They didn’t take vows; there are no kids being ripped from a parent – she doesn’t want to be with him any more? No problem – she doesn’t have to be. Her reason is immaterial.
Eagle Eye December 17, 2012, 9:20 pm
Thank you! First of all, I think that people CAN grow apart and the whole point of not being married is that the barrier to leave is rather low so that you can eventually find someone and choose to set the bar a lot higher.
Also, a person’s career path CAN say alot about a person. I’m a driven person who works all of the time, I could not be with someone who didn’t because they would probably want me to be more relaxed and have weekends or something, which I can’t do. For right now, I’m glad that my boyfriend has a similar work schedule and drive to me.
katie December 17, 2012, 10:00 pm
i feel like thats different though- you want someone with a similar work ethic to you. that has nothing to do with picking out a career path/calling in life/whatever. there is nothing here to say that this guy has a shitty work ethic or that he isnt driven- he just isnt sure where he is going yet, but he is getting flamed by this LW for it? i dont like that.
Lindsay December 18, 2012, 9:46 am
I didn’t take from the letter that she was annoyed that he didn’t have his master’s or a high-paying job. I thought the point was that he wasn’t doing very much and didn’t really work toward his goals, which had just turned into him essentially not having any goals. I mean, if my boyfriend was going to school part time and making no effort to get a job, I’d think he was kind of lazy too. And he sounds like he’s likely going back to school again because he doesn’t want to work in his chosen field. Does she ever talk about his salary or anything?
I’ve had millennial friends dump guys for being unambitious, but it’s not like them demanding that their boyfriend make six figures and have tons of degrees. It’s always been their boyfriends either avoiding getting jobs or harping on all the things they want to do one day and never doing them. Maybe some of the millennials are demanding the things you said, but all of them I’ve seen have just been hoping their boyfriends and husbands would be functional human beings.
Eagle Eye December 18, 2012, 10:07 am
Yeah, that’s how I read it as well.
So, story-time: when my boyfriend first started grad school and began working 24/7 I was still working a 9-5 M-F that left me unfulfilled. It was awful and we barely made it through that year before I started grad school and working similar hours to him.
mellanthe January 15, 2020, 6:40 am
“I think this particular LW’s response to the situation was fairly reasonable. Her long-term BF had a friend that made her uncomfortable for several reasons, so she had a discussion with him about setting boundaries. I think the fact that they were long-distance played a part as well.
But it’s entirely different, I think, to make a blanket rule that your SO can’t hang out with members of the opposite sex. That sounds insane to me (no offense! I just don’t get it!) because from my perspective, I could never date a guy who wouldn’t let me hang out with my guy friends. I mean, I know realistically that not everyone wants to bang my boyfriend. And if he cheats, that’s his fault – not mine for not regulating who he can be around.”
This. If there’s someone who makes you uncomfortable (maybe they are flirty, maybe there’s history that doesn’t look fully resolved, etc. It’s entirely reasonable to talk to your partner and set reasonable boundaries you can both agree with ; that don’t make them feel controlled but hat minimise the hurt to you. This should also bear in mind that the other person can be inappropriate even if your partner isn’t. Sure, you might trust your partner not to cheat, but it’d still probably annoy you if they regularly hung out with a friend who was flirting with them without shutting that down, even if nothing happened. Because it’s disreprectful to you.
It also depends on what kind of hanging out is involved; a public lunch catchup is different from having someone over late at night. And how long they’ve known the person, how well that person gets on with you. It needn’t even be sexual jealousy; if a person treats you badly or doesn’t acknowledge you or yoy really don’t get on, it might annoy you even if you know there’s nothing sexual or romantic going on!
That’s different from ordering a partner not to hang out with the gender they fancy; what if they are bi or pan? Not have any friends at all? That said, there are people who have traditional views, and if they agree and it makes them happy, then it doesn’t harm anyone else.